Students Shine at Sagicor Innovation Challenge 2021

Team LifeCash members (l-r) Chadan Huggup, Reinaldo Pino, Razzio Hall and Karla Capote Bustamante enthusiastically display their trophies and cheque following their win at the Sagicor Innovation Challenge held on June 8, 2021 at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel.   

Team LifeCash emerged winners of the 2021 Sagicor Innovation Challenge, following an exciting and fiercely contested final pitch competition, held on Tuesday, June 8, 2021 at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, Kingston. From an initial 13 teams that entered the second staging of the Sagicor Innovation Challenge, teams Patty Shop, Young Innovators, JamDev, Kismet and LifeCash were given the chance to make five-minute presentations of their business models, revenue streams and prototypes, followed by a Q&A session with judges. The Innovation Challenge is open to all UTech, Jamaica students, who are tasked to develop innovative software, technology, or prototypes that will improve different aspects of society.

LifeCash team members Karla Capote Bustamante, Chadan Huggup, Reinaldo Pino, Rumone Anderson, final year students of the School of Computing and Technology (SCIT) and Razzio Hall, final year student of the School of Business Administration (SOBA) were elated to be awarded the top prize of $500,000.00 for their development of LifeCash, an app that is a contactless, cashless payment solution designed to offer greater security and convenience than other payment methods.

In his welcome via Zoom, Mr. Christopher Zacca, President and CEO, Sagicor Group, expressed that it was a “no-brainer” to partner with UTech, Jamaica for the Innovation Challenge, as the University is a hub for innovation and technology advancement. He also expressed gratitude to stakeholders at the University and at Sagicor for their efforts in ensuring the continued vitality of the competition.

Dr. Andrew Isaacs, Vice Dean, Faculty of Engineering and Computing (FENC), in his remarks, highlighted the importance of the partnership between the Sagicor Group and the University, noting that “the vehicle of the Innovation Challenge has transported students who may be otherwise engaged to find new improved and reimagined solutions.” 

Judges from Sagicor Group were Mr. Christopher Zacca, President and CEO, Mr. Sean Newman, Chief Investment Officer, Mr. Mark Chisolm, Executive Vice President, Individual Insurance and Mr. Damion Hylton, Senior Vice President, Retail and Payments, with judges from UTech, Jamaica’s Faculty of Engineering and Computing Dr. Lisa Facey-Shaw, Senior Lecturer, and Mr. David White, Lecturer.

Mr. Mark Chisolm (left), Executive Vice President, Individual Insurance, Sagicor Group, presents Young Innovators’ (from left) Patrick Clark and Michael Hibbert with their 2nd place cheque.

2nd Place: Team Young Innovators’ Patrick Clark and Michael Hibbert, 3rd Year students of SCIT and Jerine Anderson, 3rd Year student, SOBA secured the second place prize of $250,000.00 with their e-commerce solution Jamart, an online marketplace that simplifies e-commerce for shoppers and sellers, by offering free and quick setup of online stores, payment flexibility and social media integration tools.

Mr. Mark Chisolm (left), Sagicor Group, with JamDev’s (l-r) Khadane Hood, Brandon Fong and Thorn Lewars. 

3rd place winners JamDev were awarded a $100,000.00 prize for their innovative creation, Workbite, an online community seeking to connect skilled workers to their potential clients. JamDev team members were SCIT final year students Thorn Lewars, Brandon Fong, and Cassandru Bartley and final year Faculty of Education and Liberal Studies student Khadane Hood.  

Following the announcement and presentations to winners of the Competition, host Debbie Bissoon also announced a special award of $100,000.00 which was presented to the Faculty of Engineering and Computing and the College of Business and Management for their support of the Sagicor Innovation Challenge among students at the University.

During the finals, short videos highlighting the work of the Sagicor Innovation Lab at UTech, Jamaica’s Papine Campus were shared.  The Innovation Lab is led by Mr. Ray-St. Michael Williams, Lecturer, SCIT.

Celebrating with the winning team, from left are Mr. David White, Lecturer and Dr. Lisa Facey-Shaw, Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Engineering and Computing and Sagicor’s Mr. Mark Chisolm. 


Michelle Beckford (Mrs.)
Corporate Communications Manager
University of Technology, Jamaica
Telephone: 876 970-5299